Romney Poised To Outspend Santorum Nearly 5:1 In Illinois

Romney Campaign and Death Star are burying Santorum even more dramatically than usual. [UPDATED]

Mitt Romney and his SuperPac have dumped over $3.6 million combined into Illinois television and radio advertisements before next week’s primary, outspending Rick Santorum by a nearly 5:1 margin, according to data from a Republican media-buying source.

The ratio follows the recent trend of Romney and his supporters vastly outspending his rivals on television — overall outspending Santorum 7:1 — though substantially more than his 3:1 advantage in Alabama and Mississippi.

Romney needs a victory in Illinois to bolster his case that he wins the larger industrial states, while Santorum is the favorite of just the traditional Republican strongholds that won’t be in play in the fall. Santorum is looking to prove the opposite — that the momentum is building behind his grassroots campaign.

Santorum is ineligible for 12 of the state’s 54 delegates up for grabs on Tuesday, but he would lost out on many more had the Romney campaign in the state not dropped their opposition to Santorum’s ballot petitions, which in some congressional districts fell hundreds of signatures short.

UPDATED: Santorum and his Super PAC increased their buys in the state, closing the gap from a nearly 8:1 pro-Romney advantage.

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